Parents participating in this discussion have high expectations that their adult children will work in inclusive settings doing work that reflect their strengths and interests. This is NOT the case for many many families. Even if parents do have such expectations they may not have a clue about how to ensure that their son or daughter with significant disabilities receives the supports they need in the workplace. Parent... more »
1. Successful Strategies
Here are some questions to consider for this topic:
1. What positive or innovative techniques have you developed to implement inclusive career pathways for youth and/or adults who face barriers to employment, including people with disabilities?
2. How does (or how might) cross system collaboration make resources available to support inclusive career pathways? (Please provide examples if you have some.)
3. What are you doing or what would you suggest to increase awareness and outreach about career pathways programs and services so that jobseekers with disabilities can take advantage of career pathways opportunities?
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Collaboration between the Centers for Independent Living during transition will help maximize independence for students with disabilities. This should begin with the first IEP addressing transition, usually age 16 (but in some states like NJ age 14).
A school could partner with a large, local business. Relationships may already exist between the business and VR. Teachers and Administrators don't have to reinvent the wheel to build one for themselves - ask VR for assistance. A business could: 1. Provide Career Mentoring for students 2. Hold a practice job fair at the business 3. Be a guest speaker in a classroom 4. Provide workplace tours 5. Practice interview... more »
When we talk about Career Pathways, it's critical that we focus on skill development and credentials. A strategy that I feel is under-utilized, is supporting individuals with significant disabilities in training programs that result in industry-recognized credentials in the trades, health care, and other industries. The idea is to integrate individuals into existing training programs (not create something separate),... more »
One strategy that has been successful for me with my students is attending career/job fairs. This gives the students an opportunity to practice their conversation and social skills and allows me time to network with hiring professionals and share my students abilities and career goals. Many of my students have been able to secure jobs through this strategy.
When a business has the opportunity to create or be a part of the creation of a training program, the business is more likely to hire individuals from the training. If the business cannot hire an individual upon completion of the training, the business is MORE likely to refer the qualified individual to another employer who is looking to hire. Also, if when a business can be part of a training (ie. internship, shadow),... more »
Upgrade All Federal and State Special Disability Employment Programs to must use for college graduates(not can use options). On May 1990, I graduated California State University, Northridge. From 1990 to Today 2016, I have received no hire success on All Federal and State Special Disability Employment Programs due to their weak activity options to use, discriminations, and no hire enforcement to for California LEAP,... more »
The use of DISCOVERY activities to get to know the student and their unique interests, motivators, preferences, strengths, approaches to learning, support system, etc. I have found that this method takes me more successfully to the right employers in the community!
Make sure you include members of the disabled community in the discussion when developing career pathways. This seems like common sense, but many boards, committees, etc....make decisions that impact groups of people that are not even represented in the discussion.
It's my firm belief that mobile devices ARE assistive technology in and of themselves in certain respects. iPhone products with Voice Over, android devices have accessibility features, and most phones of course allow voice input for search -- a HUGE time saver for those who have difficulty typing.... 1. They enable those with disabilities to communicate from wherever they are, rather than having to come to a particular... more »
Close connections with Vocational Rehabilitation. This allows me to easily move from unpaid work trials into paid work opportunities for my students. I establish conversations and familiarity with our transition counselor through weekly meetings with myself and my students in my classroom. I obtain applications and records to promoted eligibility determination long before I am ready for students to access VR funded... more »
We need to focus on educating Human Resource Managers on employing individuals with disabilities. Once you have their willingness to work with you, then you can enlist them in helping to create a more inclusive environment.
Volunteer opportunities can be used to build skills during transition years and also as a stepping stone to paid employment.
Some successful employment opportunities have come from parents or professionals who start businesses designed to train and employ people with disabilities. (there are several in Colorado) Enact legislation to provide tax credits or other incentives to start businesses which employ people with disabilities. Do case studies on these successful business models and disseminate this information to the broader community... more »
Too often, people look at companies purely as employers. Staff supporting individuals need to learn to speak to businesses: understand what business cycle the company is in, know the pain points of the business, assess gaps, know business lingo. When staff supporting individuals do this successfully, they are able to better advocate for individuals. Teach the individual the difference as well. When the interaction is... more »